SRHR & MENTAL HEALTH PROJECT
The 2009 Kenya Demographic and Health Survey report indicates that 17.7 % of young women ages 15 to 19 are either with a child or were pregnant. Of these young women, 47% represents unwanted pregnancies which have resulted to many of the young women and girls being forced out of school, low labor force participation, increased risk of HIV infection, heightened risk of GBV, early marriages with high fertility rates, drug and substance use, peer pressure and social media influence have subsequently lead to mental health cases.
Find Your Voice, Share your Story project was designed to enhance the capacity of vulnerable adolescent girls and young women (Including People Living with Disabilities (PLWD) within Kenyan communities to increase their participation in decision-making, influencing on policies and creating demand for their access to SRHR and Mental Health information and services.
This project focuses on Nairobi, Tana-River, Kisumu, and Mombasa Counties where Peer pressure is the epitome of many mental issues. Young women in these counties face sexual violence and abuse including coerced sex, defilement and rape, which has eventually increased their risk to STIs including HIV. Social media has also escalated peer pressure on the youth to meet the life style standards that are not realistic in nature, hence mental stress. Across the board, adolescents and young women lack the access to relevant accurate information on sex, sexuality and reproductive health and mental support options, hence the importance of the project: ‘‘Find your voice, share your story’’.
Outcomes of the Project
- Increased understanding of SRHR and Mental Health issues of SRHR (Adolescents and Sexuality, Teenage pregnancy, Early Marriages, Peer Pressure, Legal Policy and Social Media Influence).
- 92 Champions recruited, and their SRHR and Mental Capacity strengthened.
- Network of Champions formed within the branches
- Significant Stories of change documented.
- Implementation plans by the champions developed.
- Media awareness – radio interviews
- Inclusivity and involvement of Persons Living with Disabilities (PLWD) through a talent fashion show for Youth Living with Disability which followed after 3 days of mentorship and dialogue on SRHR and Mental Health.